When visiting Malta, there are some essential activities you’d be wise in ticking off your to-do list. Regardless of your length of stay or personal interests, prioritizing these incredible experiences will offer an authentic feeling of what it means to truly experience this magical island.
Spend a day at the beach
Let’s be honest – a large number of tourists visit the Maltese archipelago solely for the unbeatable beach vibe, and who can blame them? The long Mediterranean sand beaches of Malta, Gozo and Comino will make you feel as though transported straight into a post card. With consistently high temperatures well over 30°C from May to September, unique marine life and a countless number of cocktail beach bars – there are few places better than Malta when it comes to soaking up the summer. Some beaches offer a more isolated and tranquil setting, whilst other beaches are alive with water sports, music and chatter.
Party at Paceville
The notorious nightlife of Paceville might only appeal to the wildest of party animals, but there’s a little something for everyone if you know where to look. Dance the night away at night clubs, hit the karaoke bars, grab a bite to eat at Hard Rock, enjoy a panoramic view of the island in the trendy cocktail lounge ‘Club 22’, or get competitive in the bowling alley. The entire of Paceville is filled with 24/7 shops, cinemas, casinos, pubs and diners – rest assured you’ll find something to make your night memorable. Be wary that the area gets incredibly busy during the summer months, and then again in November when crowds of visitors flock to Paceville for the annual Battle of Malta tournament.
Check out Popeye Village
The island of Malta have provided filming locations to the cinema industry for decades, and one notable example which stands out is the live action musical adaptation of Popeye. This movie, starring Robin Williams and Shelley Duvall in the 1980s, featured a set built especially for the film on Malta’s northern coast. The result? Popeye Village – a surreal and quaint little place, and now a fully functioning town. For a truly surreal experience – and a lesson in cinema history – don’t miss this film-set-turned-theme-park. With cafes, beaches, souvenir stores, mini golf courses and workshops – Popeye Village also makes for a great family attraction.
Yet another place known for its appeal to filmmakers – although being a ‘Game of Thrones’ filming location isn’t the only thing you should associate with this fortified city. Mdina was once the island’s capital, and is filled with the centuries’ worth of history from past occupations. Walking through the atmospheric alleys of this mysterious town will conjure images of Knights and Medieval fairs. Eat lunch at one of the thematic restaurants, visit the Natural History Museum or check out the gorgeous glass products at the famous Mdina Glass stores. No holiday in Malta is complete until you’ve discovered Mdina.
Get Historical at Xemxija
Some of the oldest megalithic temples in the world are located in Malta, making the island a particularly popular destination for archaeology lovers. Along the heritage trail in the northern town of Xemxija, you’ll find a whole range of remnants left from past occupations. History buffs should not miss the opportunity to walk inside a Roman bath house, ancient cave dwellings and Neolithic tombs – all on the same, sunny hike!
Shop in Valletta
Explore this UNESCO world heritage site whilst catching up on some needed shopping. Whether you’re looking for souvenirs, books or sun hats – there’s plenty of great shops, both local and from bigger franchises, in the beautiful city. When you feel like resting your feet, enjoy an ice cream at one of the many gelatarias dotted throughout Valletta. The biggest shopping malls include the Embassy Complex and the Savory Arcade.
Enjoy dinner in the South
If you’re a fan of seafood – you’ve come to the right island. The scenic fishing village of Marsaxlokk has many restaurants that offer a relaxing evening of Mediterranean dining, with menus that pay homage to Malta’s unique cuisine. Seafood varies according to season, but you’ll almost always find the classic fried squid and tuna steaks on the menu. If you want the same romantic dining experience without having to venture so far south, try instead seafood restaurants in St Julians, like Zeri’s or Lulu.
The second largest island in the Maltese archipelago, Gozo, boasts a history and culture of its own. This island’s beaches are slightly more isolated, and the town have retained a greater degree of traditional architecture as the island has not undergone the same recent construction works as Malta. Boats to Gozo leave frequently from Malta, taking only 20 minutes. Visiting Gozo is worth your time if you want to drive along the island’s beautiful coast, or simply take a relaxing stroll through the pretty streets of its capital, Victoria.
Ultimately, it’s impossible to compile a list of everything worth doing in Malta. The island is brimming with scenic locations, fun events and amazing restaurants. Why not go and see for yourself?